Mob My thoughts on monster evolution and pets in general

Discussion in 'NPCs and Creatures' started by Scottnov, Jun 27, 2014.


What do you think about the care element of this idea?

  1. It's neat, I like caring for pets in games.

    3 vote(s)
  2. Alright I guess, as long as it isn't a constant annoyance.

    0 vote(s)
  3. Eh, I could go without it. I wouldn't mind it too much though.

    0 vote(s)
  4. No, it would get tedious and annoying eventually. (Any ideas on how to make it less tedious?)

    0 vote(s)
  5. Definitely not, I like the other ideas but not this one in the slighest. (Post below why)

    0 vote(s)
  6. Definitely not, I don't like any of the other ideas, either. (Post below why)

    0 vote(s)
  7. As long as I can pet the darn adorable things, I'm happy.

    1 vote(s)
  1. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero


    Because I couldn't find much about this subject besides asking when pet evolution will be added, I'm going to post my thoughts and ideas on it.

    I've been waiting a very long time, ever since Starbound was still in the alpha stage for pets. I've always been a sucker for pets in games, even if you have to care for them (which I actually enjoy). When they arrived in the beta stage, they were quite stupid AI wise (which is perfectly understandable and okay because it's still in beta). I was a bit disappointed that they would not be fleshed out for some time, and that they couldn't evolve yet. The awesome mod Smartpet fixes some of these issues but not all of them. Now, I'm going to talk about my ideas for monster evolution and fleshing out the pets.

    Keep in mind these are my ideas on it, and I'm not demanding or saying that any of these ideas NEED to be added. When replying, remember to be kind.

    Stages of evolution:
    Unlike in other games such as Pokemon, pets can evolve more than two times. This depends on the pet on rather it can evolve only once, or up to five times. Usually the monster will just have more developed parts that they already have, but sometimes, they will grow new parts, such as wings, and gain new abilities on evolution. Pets that you evolve into adulthood are stronger and learn more attacks. The first stage is infant, this is true for all monsters and their first form will always be an infant but will not be when they grow. The second to third stage of evolution is the "child" stage, they develop more, start to grow more matured parts (if applicable) like wings, but these are not functional yet. The third to forth stage is "adolescent" or "teenager", here they are almost adults, and they have almost fully matured. The second to fifth stage (yes, they can be adults by the second stage) is "adult", now they are fully matured, and will have become capable of most of their abilities they will gain, such as flight, or new attacks. However, during this stage, they can still learn new attacks, become stronger in attack and HP, and they can also breed (this will be talked about later).

    How to evolve your monsters:
    To evolve a monster, they must reach a certain level. By using a special gun on your monster, it will show their current health, damage, level and XP to next level. By defeating other monsters, your pet gains XP. Some monsters only evolve when leveled up in a certain climate.

    Paths of evolution:
    Monsters can sometimes, depending on the monster you tamed, evolve into separate "branches" of creatures. For instance, if a cold resistant baby was leveled up in a hotter area, it would gain heat resistance, and maybe even learn how to breathe fire or ice-fire. It's appearance would change drastically as well, gaining more hardened scales. But if the baby was continued to be raised in a cold environment, it's coat would thicken (if it had one) and get feet adapted to climbing and it's cold-oriented powers would become stronger. Then when it evolves, once, if it is raised in a different environment (or under certain other conditions) it would evolve differently. Of course, some, often most monsters would have a set path of evolution decided when they are generated. If monsters are treated with care they will protect you more vigorously (more on care later), but if you didn't care for your monster very well, it may not attack your foes, or even help them attack you.

    Once you have a fully evolved monster, you can take a monster of the same species and breed it with yours to produce an egg/baby/other weird alien thing. If you have sufficient technology you can even crossbreed species under certain conditions and end up with a hybrid. The bonus for doing this is that they will inherit certain things from their parents, allowing for even more powerful monsters.

    Genetic modification:
    Who DOESN'T love modifying your pet dog so it grows 20 legs? With the right technology, you can modify an unborn monster! Here's how:
    Egg: Take the egg and put it in the machine, open the GUI and edit to your content.
    Live baby: Take the mother to the machine and do some linking so you can modify the forming baby.
    Spores or whatever else you can think of: Take it to the machine, insert it and edit!
    Now, the things you can edit include what attacks they have (this can be edited by gathering genes from monsters using a special item), their appearance (up to a certain point), see their evolution paths and even create your own if you have upgraded the station. You can, with the right materials, make a monster go insanely fast using this, or jump really high, or even fly without wings. This is a very fun aspect of the idea, I find.

    Bio-engineering your very own creature:
    After getting to tier 10, you can make a machine that allows you to create creatures from scratch. You can edit literally EVERYTHING from their parts to their evolution stages. Even their voice clips can be changed. You have a certain amount of creation points so that you cannot create a godmonster and slaughter everyone in a few seconds, however (perhaps the amount of creation points can be changed in a config option). After finishing and creating your creature, the egg, live baby or whatever else will pop out for you to have, you will have to capture it, but you can capture it regardless of it having half health or not.

    Hatching eggs:
    If you have an egg, and it needs hatching, craft an incubator and place the egg inside. After some time, the egg will hatch into a baby, which can then be captured. The appearance of the egg can be changed when genetic modifying or bio-engineering.

    Caring for your pet (up for debate):
    (note: because I am aware that most people do not care for raising or having to care for an animal in most games, this is up for you guys or the developers to decide should it be implemented)
    Like any pet, they need care. This means you must provide a place for them to sleep, a meal from time to time, training and play. While in a chest, and nowhere but your inventory, they will not lose any hunger or any other of the care stats over time. You can let them roam around your house/base by using a behavior changing item that will cause them to wander, follow, or stay put. A happy and well cared for pet will exceed in battle, but a neglected, unfed pet will do bad. Take care of your pet, and they will take care of you.

    Misc changes:
    A return option for returning pets.
    Making pets teleport to you across the planet, and even into your spaceship. Maybe the pet is returned to you whenever you are not on the planet or same area as you.
    Make capture pods with pets in them stay on the ground infinitely.
    Make pets avoid hazards.

    I posted some monster behavior ideas before on an update thread, I'm reposting them here as well:

    1: Monsters that run away when they see you.
    2: Monsters that run away when you get too close.
    3: Monsters that attack when you get too close.
    4: Monsters that attack when you continue to follow them.
    5: Monsters that follow, but not attack you for a short period of time, then stop.
    6: Monsters that hide and then attack you.
    7: Monsters that stalk you, by hiding offscreen.
    8: Monsters that attack when you are holding food.
    9: Monsters that follow you endlessly while you are holding food.
    10: Monsters that "beg" for food by making sounds.
    11: Monsters that attack, but only after giving you a warning (roaring, growling, ect.) a few times.
    12: Monsters that attack when you get too close to their young.
    13: Monsters that have a territory, which, if you are in, they will then attack on sight, warn you, or chase you away.
    14: Monsters that attack when you mine/step on/get close to their nests.
    15: Monsters that attack out of hunger (these types of monsters have a hidden hunger bar, which depletes slowly, when half way they start hunting out creatures, including you).
    16: Monsters that are friendly to you if you have a pet.
    17: Monsters that are friendly only if you have a pet of their species.
    18: Monsters that attack if you are holding capture pods (smart creatures).
    19: Monsters that run if you are holding capture pods.
    20: Monsters that attack when you attack one of their kind.
    21: Monsters that attack when you attack ANY creature.
    22: Monsters that are curious, and will inspect and hang around objects the player has made.
    23: Monsters that will defend the player and any other creature that is being attacked.
    24: Monsters that will eat your crops and then:
    A: Run away if they see you.
    B: Only run away if they have finished all the crops they can find.
    C: Will attack you when they see you.
    25: Monsters that learn from the player. They can learn to open doors, use switches, dig, harvest crops, learn how to block shots, and parry/block melee attacks. These monsters are rare, and can be hostile, passive, or any of the other behaviors I've mentioned before.
    26: Monsters that "scan" your gear, and decide to fight, flee, or stay in place.
    27: Monsters that like to hoard things. They will pick up anything you drop, and will sometimes collect things from non-player made chests and bring them back to their hoard. These monsters spawn with a hoard which is a small cave. There is a storage container that looks like a pile of junk, where they bring hoarded things. If you steal something from this they will attack

    I put it in a spoiler tag to shorten the post up a bit.
    Thanks very much for reading this entire thing! It means a lot, please reply when you can, as I really enjoy feedback. If you have anything to add, go ahead, but remember to be kind when doing so. Report any issues in my post as well, or things that I missed.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2014
  2. Disco2

    Disco2 Existential Complex

    Interesting Idea.
  3. Interesting idea? I'd say this is a really great idea, but i can only see it taking alot of work to get done.
    TheDumbBagel and Scottnov like this.
  4. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    As it should be, good things require lots of hard work, at least, that's what I go by. Thanks for the positive feedback!
  5. Your welcome bro.
    Scottnov likes this.
  6. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    Updated the grammar a bit, this post is mostly a bump because I put a lot of thought into this.
  7. braydon

    braydon Phantasmal Quasar

    Pets should be useful at base, not have a bad infant stage. I think exp should be mainly limited to leveling from boss fights, so it doesn't turn into farm X monsters, also could be an option to feed them certain ores and plants to gain some additional exp (up to a limit, like 20% of a level for ore then it will no longer accept it, 10% for plants you grew)

    This way it doesn't become something you need to grind, you run dungeons with it, maybe do a little mining and farming if you like that.
    TheDumbBagel likes this.
  8. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    While I definitely agree that you should need a better way to gain XP (I didn't really have any other better ideas at the time), feeding a creature ore doesn't make much sense unless it is specifically designed for that by nature. Feeding plants however may be a good idea for herbivores, but I don't know if it makes too much sense (how does one learn from eating)? Also, when did I ever say the infant stage is bad? It's no worse than it currently is. Also, baby animals can't fight very well in nature so why should they in-game? It's been stated before pets will be only capture-able in infant form. Thanks for the feedback.
  9. braydon

    braydon Phantasmal Quasar

    Well things would probably have an easier time growing stronger if they ate on occasion than if they never ate. As for ore, feed your pet uranium now to make super hero mutant pets!!!

    Seriously though, why can't an alien eat metal to form a hard metal shell around it? Such a creature is physically possible, even if it doesn't exist on earth.

    But in general, don't focus on making sense so much, it's more important that a game is fun to play than that it always makes sense.

    Oh also pets could get exp from rare items, so they level from exploring too. That would need to be capped around 10-15% of each level too.
  10. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    Yeah, it is possible for a creature to eat metal, that's what I meant by "specifically designed for that".
    Even though games shouldn't always make sense, I was just saying that eating metal shouldn't apply for all creatures, but I think it's a really neat idea for some. As for eating uranium, that is a pretty neat idea too, but isn't uranium solid like metal? Forgive me if I'm wrong, but that's what I was under the assumption of.
    What do you mean exactly by "gaining EXP from rare items"? Like, being given to them? That sorta makes sense, I guess, being able to learn from things found, but what exactly do you mean? Also, did you read the entire OP? I made a care element part, you know.
    Sorry if I sounded rude in this post, its not my intention.
  11. braydon

    braydon Phantasmal Quasar

    I read the care part, I wouldn't really like it and I don't think the devs would implement it, it doesn't really add anything and it annoys people.

    The rare item would be an exp boosting item, sometimes found in chests, you give it to your pet to level, you wouldn't give them any item. The goal ofcourse is to encourage exploration and advantage varied play styles.
  12. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    Well, that's a bit harsh. From above comments it seems like some people would enjoy it. But it is up to debate, so its not that bad.
    And for the boosting item, that sounds like a decent idea. Sort of like the rare candies in Pokemon. The only issue I have with this is that it's one more thing you have to desperately search for, and at the moment there isn't quite enough variety in the world generation for exploration to be as fun as it should.
  13. braydon

    braydon Phantasmal Quasar

    You don't have to desperately search for it it would cap off when you gained 10% of a level no longer allowing you to use them, you could just do slightly more dungeons and fight slightly more bosses.
  14. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    Ah, I see what you mean now.
    At this point, it seems leveling up would be nigh-impossible. Maybe you should gain XP from fighting any monster, but a very small amount, or only some of the time you will get it?
  15. braydon

    braydon Phantasmal Quasar

    I think a large chunk of exp for each boss fight seems fair, then you beat something like 8-9 challenging bosses to level it, rather than turning it into a boring grind, kill 2,000 monsters to level. Boss fights rewards skill, grinding rewards wasting time.
  16. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    Normally I would agree here, but since the AI is really the one doing the fighting with the boss, there isn't much skill involved. I see where you are going though, and if bosses were more common and your monster wasn't young, it'd work a lot better. Think about it, it's like trying to get a puppy to kill a dragon (and yes I know you said that games shouldn't always make a super amount of sense but still). I've been exploring a lot of planets and so far in the recent save I've been using I've only been able to find 3 planets with bosses.
  17. braydon

    braydon Phantasmal Quasar

    True dungeon bosses should be out before pets are fixed, I'm, pretty sure. As for the AI doing the fighting, you'd be fighting it too, there's no reason it would have to solo to get exp, pets get exp for helping you, that's how it works in pretty much every game, not for automatically killing a boss, if they could do that that would be silly.
  18. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    Very true. My pet currently can kill anything in a single hit just from grinding monsters, this needs fixing, as I killed the jelly boss (or rather, HE did) in a few seconds using my overpowered pet.
    As I look further into it, your grinding pretty much from whatever your doing when leveling a monster, it looks like. Boss EXP should be less effective as your pet levels up/evolves when at the same threat level, so for example, if you were to kill a bunch of alpha sector bosses and leveled up your pet, it would start to give only a small sliver of EXP, meaning you have to move forward. Then however, this causes the issue that, at some point, leveling up would be really, really hard once you get to the max threat level.
  19. braydon

    braydon Phantasmal Quasar

    Yes of course you'd need to fight increasingly harder bosses, yes they would get really hard, but maxing a pet shouldn't be easy, if you can't beat the hardest bosses you shouldn't get the best pets and items.
  20. Scottnov

    Scottnov Big Damn Hero

    No, I don't mean that it won't be easy, just that you will eventually get to such a level where fighting even the highest leveled bosses would not gain little to no EXP at all.

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